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Divinity Original Sin is an old-school cRPG with new ideas & modern execution, will release this year. Funded by fantastic backers!
Divinity Original Sin is an old-school cRPG with new ideas & modern execution, will release this year. Funded by fantastic backers!
19,541 backers pledged $944,282 to help bring this project to life.

Getting excited? You beta be!

Posted by Larian Studios LLC (Creator)

This year, April is bringing more than mere showers: The beta version of Divinity: Original Sin is nearly ready for launch and will hit Steam the week of April 1 (no jokes!).

Those of you who have been making careful rounds of the alpha world will be excited to find the following: 

  • New region unlocks
  • Hugely expanded character creation options, including visuals and presets
  • Tons of new talents 
  • A new cache of new skills and spells 
  • Better AI and new enemy tactics
  • Hundreds of bugfixes
  • New and upgraded visuals, special effects, and music
  • Improved loading times and stability
  • Improved cooperative dialog systems

To explain lots more about what's going on in the beta, Swen did a tour of the office and let the developers speak for themselves about what their departments have been up to: 

If you watch the video, you'll find a nugget of wistfulness among the litany of good news:

Due to time and budgetary constraints, we have chosen not to implement day/night cycles for the launch of Divinity: Original Sin.

This was no easy decision, but in the end, resources had to be allocated toward stability and bugfixing in order to release a content-heavy, technically smooth game (almost) on time.

We realize our fans and backers will be understandably bummed by this news, but we hope to make it up to you with a game that we are proud to release and you will feel proud to have supported.

If you'd like to read more about the reasoning behind the decision to forego day/night cycles, head over to Swen's blog for a more thorough explanation.

Beta Showcase and Q&A on Twitch.TV

If you'd like to preview the beta and ask Swen and David some questions yourself, we'll be holding a session next Monday, March 31 at 18:00 Brussels time, GMT+2. (That's 9:00 a.m. in Los Angeles, 12:00 p.m. in New York, and 20:00 in Moscow).

Check out our channel to join the fun.

How high will David stack his boxes this time? Don't miss it, next Monday!
How high will David stack his boxes this time? Don't miss it, next Monday!

Rewards, rewards, rewards! Claiming your reward tiers.

If you pledged a reward tier during our Kickstarter campaign, it's time to claim your prizes. First of all, if you haven't already, head over to your Larian Vault account and fill in any available fields regarding prize tiers. If you don't see any missing fields, but you pledged a reward tier, don't worry! That just means it's time to get thinking about your personalized contribution for the game. We will contact you soon to collect information about your reward contributions!

If you pledged to write a message in a bottle, now's the time to think about what your message will be.

If you pledged to name an undead, get your ectoplasm flowing.

If you pledged to name a pet, it's time to decide which of your cats gets the honour (but don't tell the other, or you risk creating civil unrest in your home).

If you pledged to name a summon, decide on something firey, icey, earthy, or airy for your unique elemental.

If you pledged to create a henchman, start thinking about what type of character with what types of talents you'd like to see in the game (and don't forget a name!).

If you pledged to write a dialog, have a look at some of the dual dialogs in the game for inspiration regarding formatting and decide what, exactly, you'd like your party members to debate.

If you pledged to create an item combo, it's time to decide: serious or silly? Weapon or consumable? Your options are many.

If you pledged to become/design an NPC, we've got a wide world for you to join. Start thinking about what you'd like to be and say.

If you chose to name a statue, now's the time to name it!

After you name your summons, this could be 'Rhodon the Scorcher,' 'The Cursed Twins,' or 'Little Gloria Daisytrousers'.
After you name your summons, this could be 'Rhodon the Scorcher,' 'The Cursed Twins,' or 'Little Gloria Daisytrousers'.

An unmissable Kickstarter for Divinity fans...

Serpent in the Staglands by Whalenought Studios doesn’t have a lot of visibility yet, but struck a chord at Larian because it reminds us very much of the games we made when we started out, and you can clearly see the love and passion for what’s being made here. This husband and wife team deserves every shot at making their game come through and with a bit of luck, they may get to make the cooperative RPG they’re dreaming of.

In the News... 

Allowing the killing of quest givers like you can in Divinity: Original Sin seems to be a very rare thing nowadays. So rare in fact that it's inspired the wonderful Julian GD to make a new movie to illustrate exactly what happened in our offices when Dodger and Jesse Cox visited us! We were indeed quite nervous when we saw what that maniac was planning on doing to our fragile alpha code.


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    1. Robcat on

      @ Devon

      The realities of game development vs people's hopes and dreams eh?

      Yes, kickstarter isn't exactly a pre-order service, though it's not exactly a charity either. It's pretty analogous to an investment I think - i.e. taking a risk with the calculated expectation of receiving a certain return, even if it's not exactly that either. I'm aware that some people view KS purely in terms of a donation with no expectations, yet I don't think that is very practical or helpful to the gaming industry. Businesses who profit from the 'investment' of backers' capital should be accountable for their actions, and funded accordingly.

      Yeah, I do think developers have a responsibility to backers to fulfil their promises, yet they will not always be able to for various reasons. We'll have to judge each on a case-by-case basis. It's not like we backers really have much power to hold them accountable either, apart from voicing our opinions and voting with our wallets in the future. Or perhaps we do have a lot of power collectively...

      I should make it clear that I don't believe Larian used any stretch goals as 'bait', I am sorry if I gave you that impression. I believe they honestly thought they would be able to add the day-night schedules for that amount of funding - a sincere underestimation that doesn't do anybody any favours, yet everything else they are doing is so brilliant that people aren't giving them much of a hard time about it.

      Besides, Larian have added so much stuff to this game that I'd have to say that overall they are delivering on more than they promised.

      I just wanted to express my thoughts and feelings on the matter to Larian and anyone out there really, that's all. I do hope (and assume) that Larian will learn from their first kickstarter and will be careful making future promises if they do any more. That's probably a lesson that all kickstarter developers should be mindful of.

      Also, at the end of the day Larian will be a better development studio for having tried to do the schedules and the experience will serve them well in hopefully making the next game with them ;-)

    2. Raze_Larian on

      They are going to try to maintain save compatibility for awhile, though.
      However, the beta saves will not be compatible with the released version.

    3. LordMatsu on

      @Raze Ahh damn. Looking forward to release then :D

    4. Andy Linea of Sin - DOoD on

      Huh, I thought the beta comes today and now I read again and they wrote this week, not today.... :-(
      Patience, patience.... back to the studies...

    5. Raze_Larian on

      Release means no more wipes. During the beta trying to maintain save compatibility could make tracking down bugs needlessly complicated if items are removed or spells changed, etc.

    6. Devon Mullane on

      @Robcat, seems you learned a valuable lesson that the whole community is sobering up to. Kickstarter isn't a pre-order service. There are no guarantees that the game will ship, let alone ship as prescribed. I agree wholly with your opinion that it was used as bait to incur further funding, stripping the feature is therefore bad business.

      It's easy to overlook with Divinity because it's shaping up to be such an incredible game, but can't be overlooked as a lesson in consumer awareness.

    7. LordMatsu on

      Day/Night cycle in future patches would be cool :) also does beta mean no more wipes?

    8. Robcat on

      And because I would prefer not to focus too much on this particular fruit of fortune considering all the really great stuff in this update, let me just add that Original Sin looks like it will be a truly amazing game with or without the full schedules. Heck some people are expressing that they would prefer it without them, so I am happy for those people too ;-)

    9. Robcat on


      I’ll try to explain myself then.

      The amount I pledged isn't related to my (relatively minor) loss of faith in Larian. I mentioned it to emphasise the significance of not fulfilling your promises.

      I see stretch goals as features promised in return for money.

      And to my knowledge the final stretch goal was in fact reached, including paypal and the two fundraisers from RPGWatch and RPGCodex, which I recall Larian assured us during the campaign would be counted towards the final tally.

      You are right that I didn't pledge knowing that the goal would be achieved, however it was, and so I then formed a reasonable expectation to believe that the promised feature would be delivered.

      Yes, the day/night NPC schedules were always the obvious feature to get cut if anything had to be. Yet I trusted Larian to be able to implement them if they said they could, which to me is essentially what stretch goals represent.

      So my point is that you shouldn't make promises you are not sure you can keep, especially when people invest significantly (in time, money and emotion) in those promises.

      Hence I will be more sceptical about Larian’s next kickstarter (if they do one) and stretch goals. I will ask myself, how likely are they to actually be able to do what they plan? I will most likely back it (assuming it’s another awesome RPG or something I'm interested in), but I will be more hesitant investing myself because my faith has been affected, albeit in a relatively minor way all things considered.

      I did try to express in my post my understanding and sympathy towards Larian for making a difficult and sensible decision, they are still by far my favourite gaming company btw, however I did feel the need to call them out on this.

    10. Stabbey on

      All I'm saying is that people should keep their expectations in check.

    11. Darth Trethon - Exile in Torment on

      @Stefan For Original Sin more than for any other game the mods should be extremely awesome because of the actual tool we get for it. I very much look forward to playing with it myself though I doubt I'll make anything stunning myself.

    12. Weresheep of Sin AKA Stefan

      Stabbey, I don't know how well you are versed in the modding-scene, but if you look at Oblivion/Skyrim mods - or go back to Neverwinter Nights - you might be stunned at what one single dedicated person doing a labor of love can achieve ... I for example would not touch an unmodded Skyrim - the game is only as great as it is with certain mods.

    13. Stabbey on

      I wouldn't have minded a merely cosmetic day/night cycle. A modder MAY be able to add in a cosmetic day/night cycle.

      Note that Larian said nothing about putting the schedules in in a later patch - if that was still an option, I'm sure they would have mentioned that. The fact that they just said it was cancelled tells me that it's completely cancelled.

      If the 40-strong team of professional game developers decided that it was not worth the trouble to add in the reactive NPC schedules, there's basically zero chance that a modder can do it.

    14. Gavin Reading Rainbow KS backer! on

      It is unfortunate that day/night cycles cannot be included in the game, but I understand that QA is a bottleneck in this case. It would not be good to have QA tied up for 3 months on day/night cycles while the rest of the team twiddles their thumbs.

      I appreciate the honesty and the sound decisions being made for this game. Compared to how some recent games like Diablo III and SimCity rolled out to the public, I would definitely say Larian is a developer that thinks more like its fans and supporters. You have my thanks for that - and my money, which is in stark contrast to the other game examples I gave.

      If day/night cycles are still on the agenda for a post-release content update, or for modders, I would like to offer my opinion on them: meaningful day/night cycles to me are in real-time. I dislike "compressed" game days where a day in a game is shortened to 30 minutes or 6 hours or whatever. I want a game day to be a real day, a full 24 hours. Most games give you the option to "rest" or "wait" for a number of hours. Since that mechanic is already there, just make the game day a real day! That way, when I go into a massive dungeon and take my time, I do not come out of it feeling like time warped around me because I was in there for 3 days. I was in there for a few hours, which is perfectly reasonable. Taking 15 minutes to sneak up on an enemy at the end of a hallway? Not reasonable. Just tell it like it is - it took me 45 seconds to sneak up on that enemy. I see no reason to distort time.

    15. Missing avatar

      Dragon on

      I believe including PP and post campaign contributions it was actually reached, and I do think it's a great shame. But at the same time, I understand the realities of game development and I'd rather have a better game than trying to crowbar everything in. As long as the editor/engine are flexible enough for this to be implemented later either as a mod or by the devs themselves, I will take solace that it may yet happen.

    16. Diggle Hyde on

      Can we at least hope for day/night cycle after the release? I remembered playing Digimon World 1 with day/night cycle, it was awesome.

    17. Darth Trethon - Exile in Torment on

      Choices and consequences for the player are a lot more important than day and night. It would have been nice to have but I can certainly understand why it's being removed so all is gravy. I absolutely love the way this game is coming along and I can't wait to play the final will be insanely epic.

    18. Missing avatar

      Cutter on

      For me day/night is nice but not essential. I just hope the game is good enough to spur many sales beyond the KS and warrant a good expansion/DLC where you can then do day/night properly. Anyway, looking good, fellas. Go Team Larian go!

    19. Missing avatar

      Greenfr0G on

      Game looks great!
      I have a question: Since engine is capable of night/day cycle, even though you will not implement it due to time constraints + better polish, could you still implement it into editor? I know modders would definitely took advantage of that (in a good sense of a word).

      What are your thoughts on that, Larian?

    20. Missing avatar

      Dianne Hackborn on

      @Robcat I'm not sure how this can impact your faith in Larian, no matter how much you pledged -- since the stretch goal of having day/night cycles in the game was never reached, you never could have made a pledge in the Kickstarter with the expectation of it being there. Sure, it was exciting when they said afterwards that with the PayPal donations added in they would consider it as achieved... but I don't see how anyone couldn't see this as the feature most likely to be on the chopping block if they find themselves getting towards the end with an overload of things to do and behave responsibly in their prioritization.

    21. Ebenezer Arvigenius + Piranjade on

      In would really have liked to see the day/night cycle in he game but I trust you guys that you know what you're doing and that you wouldn't disappoint your kickstarters without good reason.

      On another note: I'm really looking forward to see what people come up with as their message in a bottle! That is such a cool feature!

      Oh, btw any news on a possible release date?

    22. Kevin B. on

      @Martin Müller

      You know I'm pretty disappointed by this too and I'm all for developers taking all the time they need to complete their games, but I'm also realistic enough to know that time costs money. As the video says they're already over schedule and over budget. Accusing Larian of being cheap and lazy for not including a feature for which the stretch goal *wasn't even actually reached* is damn short sighted.

      I prefer for Larian to deliver a game with a little less features but that is as polished as they can get it and for Larian Studios not to join the ranks of successful Kickstarter campaigns that have led too financial ruin for their creators because they overpromised but couldn't/wouldn't back down from there.

    23. Missing avatar

      Martin Müller on

      I post it here because the official forums are down since the new update came out.

      First of: I'm really happy to see the game goes beta soon, but NOT for which price!

      I'm pretty disappointed to see that the $1 million stretch goal won't be fulfilled. I wouldn't care for more or a big game release delay as long as the goals will be fulfilled. Serioulsy: take your time! Maybe I'm one of the few who thinks like this? But I know this industry for such a long time now and I'm disappointed to see that this kind of "business" happens on a Kickstarter project (you're not the first one) aswell.

      It's for sure DIE HARD to add NPC schedules in a game with such a complexity and condsindering the "hot seat / in/out" coop multiplayer. But that's nothing you know now, you knew it back when the stretch goals were announced aswell. I think it feels now like the "cheap" and more "easy" way to release the game and save a bunch of money.

      I know Swen is a super big fan of Ultima VII and tries to make Original Sin as close as possible. But in this topic the company won't accomplished what a game featured in 1992...

    24. Shane-o - WoOS on

      Although it would have been nice for day/night cycles to be added in, I completely understand and support the reasoning behind their removal. Mayhaps they could be added in later via a patch or even an expansion?

    25. Robcat on

      p.s.s. And their was a LOT of awesome stuff in that update. It's hard for it not to become overshadowed by my disappointment, but I did notice Larian ;-)

    26. Robcat on

      p.s. Thank you so much Larian for all your hard work, it is tremendously appreciated.

    27. Robcat on

      Well, amidst all the awesome stuff I have to admit to being really disappointed about the loss of day/night schedules, even if I understand the decision and agree with it. It’s unfortunate, however even appreciating the risks associated with game development, this does harm my faith towards Larian and willingness to pledge as much as I did for D:OS towards any of their future kickstarters.

      I would need to be better convinced of their planning.

      I mean, I pledged an unhealthy amount of money and spent a significant amount of my own free time ‘campaigning’ to reach that magical million milestone and its promised feature I was personally so hoping for. When the kickstarter ended I said (and felt) that dreams can come true. Of course unfortunately sometimes they don’t. While I approve of the decision and believe they have their priorities right, this news still leaves a bad taste in my mouth. Nevertheless...

      ... it is better by far to have strived and failed than never to have tried at all.

      When all is said and done, even knowing how this turned out I don’t regret spending either the time or the money and would do it all again regardless. The extra funding has obviously been put to very good use to make a rare RPG into something truly special. And Larian’s iterative and innovative style of development is something I’m very happy to support, both because of the type of games they seek to make and because I anticipate some very interesting and exciting things to come from this company in the future - Original Sin being but an example of things potentially on the way.

      So now, I just hope that Original Sin gets the release reception it deserves to enable a fully-fledged expansion pack including the day-night schedules, if this is possible.

      Or better yet, make the next RPG... bigger, brighter, bolder, better and built with cycles & schedules in mind from the ground up. Now to fund it...

    28. Korg on

      Cant say I'm happy with this new but the games still looks awesome :)

    29. The Old Farmer on

      After watching the video and the amount of extras that you have going in it is very understandable that you would need too much more time to put out a polished game with the day night cycles. This is going to be a great great game, as well if you keep to the voice talent levels you had in dragon commander it will be spectacular.

      Keep up the hard work - but take a break once and a while too some of your guys are looking a bit ragged. Of course that could just be from hard partying too ;)

    30. gandalf.nho

      Well, maybe we can get this later in a expansion or similar, but is not, for me if the rest of the content is well-developed and polished then great

    31. Lord Panda on

      I'm pretty disappointed. For me, day / night was the best stretch goal and one of the best and endearing features in games like Ultima. Oh well, mod support might help add day / night back in :)

    32. alcaray on

      More Steam in my inbox. I feel violated.

      About day/night: for an obsessive completeness guy like myself, this can be a blessing. This means that we don't have to search every area and talk to every npc twice, in order to find all the content.

    33. Kentauroi on

      I for one am not that upset about day/night cycles not being included. It would've been a nice feature, but it's not a big part of what I want out of an RPG. As long as the combat, dialogue and coop is up to par I'll be very happy.

      Don't sweat it Larian, sacrificing that feature for better stability on launch makes perfect sense to me and I'm still eagerly awaiting D:OS.

    34. Franc3sko on

      Amèrement déçu si cette feature n’est jamais implentée, et je saurai m’en souvenir pour vos prochains jeux messieurs... C’pas grave et je pardonnerai bien volontiers si elle est implentée « plus tard ».

    35. Masaken - WoOS on

      I've been hoping that you wouldn't implement a gimmick like day and night cycles mostly because I understand the sheer amount of man-hours such a project would take, would in the end take up most of the stuff that is really fun to do. Think about how many times in you've waited or missed quests or secrects in other games becasue of day-and-night-cycle-specific gameplay mechanics.
      Solid decision making Larian!

    36. Weresheep of Sin AKA Stefan

      I don't think they had enough PayPal pledges when the announced that they would still add the day / night cycles. I don't know how much they received in PayPal pledges later on, though.

    37. Stabbey on

      I already had been hearing rumours that it wouldn't be in on first release and might have to be pushed out to a patch, so the news that it was outright cancelled wasn't a huge shock. If they're not even going to say that it will have to be patched in later, I imagine that it ended up being so much trouble that it wasn't going to be worth working on even to patch in.

    38. Helena on

      @ Stefan: the remainder was made up with Paypal pledges, though. Sounds like they just went over-budget - which is fair enough, it's very common in video game projects, but still a bit disappointing. (However, I'd rather have them cut this feature than go the 'Broken Age' route and split the game into two halves or something...)

    39. Weresheep of Sin AKA Stefan

      To be fair: The day / night cycle with suitable NPC behavior was the 1 million stretch goal, which we missed by almost 60 000. Larian said after the end of the Kickstarter, that they would include it nonetheless as we were so close ... but it seems their original estimates were closer to the truth.

    40. Poppy Appletree on

      I'm pretty disappointed about this, since this was explicitly supposed to be included in the game and was used as a stretch goal promise. I can understand the rationale, but I definitely think that this is something that needs to be added into the game later if it's not going to be included at launch.

      (I originally posted this in the wrong place.)

    41. Helena on

      Not gonna lie: I'm a little disappointed by the decision on day/night cycles. I understand that features sometimes have to be cut, and kudos to you for explaining the decision so honestly and in so much detail... but when I remember how much effort everyone put into reaching that last stretch goal in the final hours of the Kickstarter, it does seem like a bit of a slap in the face. I'm sure the game will be great anyway, but I'd really like to see at least a cosmetic day/night cycle like in the original DD - that way the more complicated NPC-schedule stuff could be added in later by modders, or through an expansion pack.

      Apart from that, congratulations on reaching the beta stage! Game is looking good (I liked the sneak preview of the new character customisation options), and as always, it's really interesting to hear the devs discuss their work. Keep it up!

    42. Missing avatar

      Restless on

      Any chances to implement that later? You said you couldn't do it for "launch", so are there still hopes?
      Honestly, I just hope we can get a great overall game. Would have been great to have the day&night cycles too, but nothing works out perfectly, I guess.

    43. Rodrigo "rrc2soft" Roman on

      Thanks also for the honesty. It is a bittersweet feeling... I really wanted the night/day cycles in the game (Ultima VII!), but I trust you guys and I am sure it will be a great game. Just allow modders to use something similar to night&day in their mods, ok? :-)

    44. Peter "araziel" Cruickshanks

      Was really looking forwards to it (waiting around for NPC to go other places to do stupid gamebreaking things etc), but honestly as long as the game is good I don't care too much. I will probably find other ways to break it :P

    45. Jhonrock on

      I'm really excited to see how big and deep (in all aspects) the game is shaping up, but i can't shake off the sadness of the day and night cycles not being implemented in the game. That was the stretch goal i had most of my expectations for the game.
      After this sad news, something inside me broke (remember, i had the highest expectations about this feature). But i should have expected something like that. Nothing never is so good and perfect as it appear to be, and this game is no exception.
      But don't take me wrong, i still want to play this game and i'm sure that i'll have a lot of fun playing it. It just that i can't deny this disappointing feeling inside me. Well, it will pass.
      Now, to clarify one thing. The day and night cycles is out of the chart. OK. But does this mean that game world will be forever sunny or only the NPC's specific behavior for day and night are out?

    46. Liquid Wolf on

      Thanks for the honesty.

      Still looking forward to this game.

    47. Weresheep of Sin AKA Stefan

      I'm a bit disappointed. I would really, really have liked meaningful day / night cycles ... but meaningful means that I have to accept they are hard to implement and require a lot of work that might be better spent elsewhere. That's why I felt an editor was so important ... it hopefully will enable users to put such a day / night cycle in.

    48. Nick J. on


      I absolutely do NOT want a staggered release. Big "no" vote from me.

    49. Missing avatar

      AstralWanderer on

      Disclaimer: Won't touch Steam so haven't played the beta.
      I would however like to join those who express disappointment in the day/night loss. It isn't so much the feature itself, but its knock-on requirements (that NPCs have a place to work/eat/sleep and a schedule to travel between them) that make an RPG gameworld so much more plausible. It means towns that have enough buildings for everyone to sleep in, inns and taverns with enough seating to accommodate everyone and a rhythm to the world that gives it a heartbeat. Those who have played games including these features (Ultima V and VII, The Witcher 1 & 2) will understand better what a difference this can make.
      Of course, it may be these extra requirements that actually caused Larian to drop this feature. In which case, I would suggest as an alternative, a staggered release with a smaller gameworld (with less bugfixing hopefully) to start with and updates adding new areas later on.
      One reason for this is that it seems easier to add new areas to an existing game than to retrofit day/night and NPC schedules. The second is that it does not involve backtracking on public commitments made during this KS.

    50. Dave, Shadowrunner on

      It's no great loss IHMO. Day / Night cycles would add realism but sometimes more realism does not mean more fun. If quest giving NPCs were only available at certain times of day then that inevitably leads to either (a) missing the quest completely or (b) having to either rest or let the game sit until the appropriate amount of time passes; which is quite tedious. I know some people love finding hidden stuff in games that may take several replays to even find (and I'm sure there still will be lots of secrets to uncover in D:OS) but having importnat NPCs only found at certain times didn't seem fun to me. If that would have been the result of day / night schedules, this could be a blessing in disguise.